Houston • The Jazz once again overcame a double-digit deficit — more than one, in fact — but once again fell short, this time 124-116. They lost their ninth game on the road to bring their record to .500.
Playing without Marvin Williams and Derrick Favors, both of whom sat out with injuries, the Jazz were outscored 17-9 after they tied the game at 107 with 5:16 remaining.
Gordon Hayward led all scorers with 21 points, including 11 in a pivotal third quarter, while Randy Foye and Al Jefferson each added 20. Seven Rockets scored in double figures, including Patrick Patterson, who poured in 20.
TheJazz fought an uphill battle the whole game against a team that ultimately shot 55.4 percent from the field.
The Jazz got big boosts from rarely used bench players. Alec Burks scored 11 points in 14 minutes and even Jeremy Evans, the defending slam dunk champion, contributed, scoring four points and corralling three rebounds.
After stumbling to a 58-49 halftime deficit, the Jazz came alive in the third quarter. Led by Hayward, they opened the period on a 13-4 run. The Jazz made seven of their final eight shots of the quarter to take an 86-85 lead into the fourth quarter.
There, they once again fell behind by 10, and once again fought back. A 3-pointer by Randy Foye capped a 13-2 run that tied the game at 107. However, two possessions later, Mo Williams lost the ball off Jeremy Lin’s foot. Lin stole the ball and Williams took a foul to protest the absence of a kicked ball call.
Lin made both free throws with 4:35 to put Houston up 109-107. That opened the floodgates for Houston, which turned it into a 14-5 lead and keyed its final run.